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It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Natanya Carter Jensen, age 83, on November 17, 2023. She left this world surrounded by love, leaving behind a legacy of faith, commitment to service, and cultivating joyful memories with family and friends.
Born on August 28, 1940, in Provo, Utah, Natanya was the daughter of Bert and Blanche Carter. She grew up in Utah County, Utah, with her older brother Ken and younger brother Dennis. She loved her brothers and relished opportunities to share stories from her childhood that involved her brothers. As the only daughter, she was a daddy’s girl. While Natanya was a Girl Scout, the girls in her troop each committed to make an apron that they would enter in a county-wide sewing competition. The night before the apron was to be submitted for judging, her mother discovered that Natanya had not followed through on her commitment to make an apron for the competition. So that the family would not lose face with the Girl Scout leaders in the neighborhood, her mother made an apron that evening and had Natanya submit it as her own creation. Not surprisingly, the apron won first place—and Natanya kept the secret of who had actually made that apron until much later in life.
Natanya loved her high school years. Quoting from the yearbook of the Orem Tigers—the Tigerama—for the graduating class of 1958, we read: “The sophisticated seniors of Orem High School have had a pleasurable year with many outstanding activities. For example, senior hop, senior sluff day, and many more. None of these activities would have been a success if not for their three capable senior class officers, Natanya Carter, Vice President; Mike Hoff, President; and Janice Varley, Secretary.” Natanya had such fond memories of her high school experiences and sweet friends, nicknamed the “dizzy dozen”—friends that she remained close to throughout her life.
Don and Natanya met through Natanya’s brother, Ken—who was one of Don’s good friends. Don was smitten with feelings of love at first sight—but it took ten days of vigilant asking before Natanya agreed to a first date. Natanya Carter married Don Kirk Jensen on February 27, 1959, in the Salt Lake City temple. Together, they built a life filled with countless cherished moments. Early in her married life, Natanya worked as a secretary at Utah State University while Don worked to complete his college education. One of the highlights of their college life was spending a summer in the Holly Mountain wildfire lookout tower near Boise, Idaho. It is a memory that both Natanya and Don cherished and frequently shared with kids and grandkids.
While living in Logan, Natanya and Don had their oldest daughter, Christa Ann, and their first son, Kirk David. After Don graduated from Utah State in 1963, they moved to North Ogden, where Anna Lee, Deborah Lynn, and David Kent joined the family.
Natanya was a dedicated wife, mother, and grandmother. Along with her many household responsibilities, Natanya cultivated her talents in sewing and quilting. She loved to share this talent with her family—sewing clothing and making a quilt as a wedding gift for each married grandchild. Despite many struggles with health throughout her life, Natanya was always up for an adventure. She loved to travel to see lighthouses throughout the country and road trips to see children living outside of Utah. Most recently, she loved having Don take her on car rides through the canyons along the Wasatch Front to enjoy the beautiful Utah mountain scenery. In general, Natanya found joy in any activity that involved a member of her family, and her enthusiasm for spending time with family was infectious to all who knew her.
After Don retired, he and Natanya dedicated many years of their life to missionary service for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. They served four full-time missions: three outside of Utah in Roanoke, Virginia; Louisville, Kentucky; and Calgary, British Columbia; and finally, in the Ogden, Utah mission. They loved the people they served in each of these mission areas and spoke fondly of the ways in which their lives had been enriched by this legacy of service.
Over the last few years of her life, as her health kept her indoors more, Natanya became an avid Utah Jazz fan. This love for the Jazz was fueled by kids and grandkids who indulged her with occasional Jazz tickets and treated her like royalty when they could get her to a Jazz game in Salt Lake. While at home, she never missed a Jazz game on the television and loved to wear her Jazz jersey and Jazz socks to watch the games. Natanya always had a ready laugh and made easy conversation wherever she went.
Natanya is survived by her husband, all five of her children and their spouses, sixteen grandchildren and their spouses, twenty-four great grandchildren, and both of her brothers. She will be dearly missed by all who had the privilege of knowing her.
A funeral will be held on Tuesday, November 21, 2023, at 11:30 am at the North Ogden Twenty-First Ward chapel located at 626 E. 2600 N., North Ogden, Utah. A visitation will be held at the same location from 9:30 to 11:00 am the same day.
The family would like to express their gratitude to family, kind neighbors, many friends, and the kind and thoughtful medical staff at the McKay Dee Hospital in Ogden, Utah, where she passed.
Please join us in celebrating the life of Natanya Carter Jensen and remembering the impact she had on our individual lives.